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This photo is a collection of work and play photos, or a photo diary from the last couple of months. Some may have appeared in your viddy before now, via Instagram.

This Photo was taken in the final weeks before Christmas, a slightly abortive family trip out into the forests near home. We took a path that had been taken back into the forest for want of regular use. For those of us who live in the Highlands, in December we live in the mountain’s shadow. It can feel quite sombre and subdued, so it’s important to get out for fresh air and whatever vitamin D is there.

This Photo was taken in the final weeks before Christmas, a slightly abortive family trip out into the forests near home. We took a path that had been taken back into the forest for want of regular use. For those of us who live in the Highlands, in December we live in the mountain’s shadow. It can feel quite sombre and subdued, so it’s important to get out for fresh air and whatever vitamin D is there.

This Photo is from the back of our local hill, looking over Newtonmore, a glorious family walk. Christmas eve was brighter. I’ve started using the 40mm Voitlander again for local stuff. It’s cranky but I love the colours, and a prime is good discipline.

This Photo is from the back of our local hill, looking over Newtonmore, a glorious family walk. Christmas eve was brighter. I’ve started using the 40mm Voitlander again for local stuff. It’s cranky but I love the colours, and a prime is good discipline.

This Photo is from the same walk, at dusk. I am slowly feeling out a photo project or series based around local birch trees called  The Silver Darlings . Birch are early colonisers, and support more UK wildlife than any other tree species bar Oak.

This Photo is from the same walk, at dusk. I am slowly feeling out a photo project or series based around local birch trees called The Silver Darlings. Birch are early colonisers, and support more UK wildlife than any other tree species bar Oak.

This Photo is another one I’m looking at with the same project in mind, but I don’t think it’s there yet. I like the shadows in this version but the highlights need something else. I remember when this branch came down last year. I like the way the woods have embraced the fall.

This Photo is another one I’m looking at with the same project in mind, but I don’t think it’s there yet. I like the shadows in this version but the highlights need something else. I remember when this branch came down last year. I like the way the woods have embraced the fall.

This photo was taken on a very damp workshop, while discussing tone. Although the subject here is very conventional, the exposure and processing reflect that conversation.

This photo was taken on a very damp workshop, while discussing tone. Although the subject here is very conventional, the exposure and processing reflect that conversation.

This Photo was taken on an old road above the new road. If you know your classic Scottish photography, you’ll know this spot. Conditions weren’t right for a straight ahead shot, so here’s a crop which I quite like. There are further crops possible inside this one.

This Photo was taken on an old road above the new road. If you know your classic Scottish photography, you’ll know this spot. Conditions weren’t right for a straight ahead shot, so here’s a crop which I quite like. There are further crops possible inside this one.

This Photo was taken as my student was looking in the opposite direction. I was aiming at the light, but I like the car in this photo just as much.

This Photo was taken as my student was looking in the opposite direction. I was aiming at the light, but I like the car in this photo just as much.

This photo, and the one below were taken in-between rain showers in Glen Etive, a powerful place.

This photo, and the one below were taken in-between rain showers in Glen Etive, a powerful place.

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This Photo was taken on the same workshop. I knew the river further down but this exact spot was new to me, and a real find. It’s one of 7 rivers that Dalness estate are looking to build Hydro on, which would be a total disgrace. I believe it’s our job to witness these places, and to tell others what we’ve seen, a controversial position for some. Anyway, conditions weren’t great this time, but I know where it is and will return and try and get a photo that does the place some kind of justice.

This Photo was taken on the same workshop. I knew the river further down but this exact spot was new to me, and a real find. It’s one of 7 rivers that Dalness estate are looking to build Hydro on, which would be a total disgrace. I believe it’s our job to witness these places, and to tell others what we’ve seen, a controversial position for some. Anyway, conditions weren’t great this time, but I know where it is and will return and try and get a photo that does the place some kind of justice.

This Photo is from the Cairngorms. I don’t think I’ve ever had great conditions here, and this is as close to a decent shot of the ridge as I’ve come. Suddenly, the angles slid into place, ‘landscape’ photography as movement.

This Photo is from the Cairngorms. I don’t think I’ve ever had great conditions here, and this is as close to a decent shot of the ridge as I’ve come. Suddenly, the angles slid into place, ‘landscape’ photography as movement.

This Photo and the one below were taken at the end of a fairly obscure ridge, in the north, in November, one section of which was particularly testing. File under  Vanishing Point . Since then it turns out that a new book may be happening, so this route warrants a return visit in more conventionally scenic conditions. There’s a good circuit to be completed around a haunted glen. I met a fox in the dark at the bealach.

This Photo and the one below were taken at the end of a fairly obscure ridge, in the north, in November, one section of which was particularly testing. File under Vanishing Point. Since then it turns out that a new book may be happening, so this route warrants a return visit in more conventionally scenic conditions. There’s a good circuit to be completed around a haunted glen. I met a fox in the dark at the bealach.

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This Photo and the two below were taken in well known spots near Aviemore at dawn and at dusk, to facilitate discussions on subject and abstraction. What are we aiming for when we take a photograph? What do we hope to achieve and what’s the best way of describing where we are? Most people come ready to ask those kind of questions, some less so, but it’s all good. Everyone’s answers are theirs.

This Photo and the two below were taken in well known spots near Aviemore at dawn and at dusk, to facilitate discussions on subject and abstraction. What are we aiming for when we take a photograph? What do we hope to achieve and what’s the best way of describing where we are? Most people come ready to ask those kind of questions, some less so, but it’s all good. Everyone’s answers are theirs.

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This photo and the one below were taken to facilitate a discussion on composition. Students will often be familiar with ‘the rules’ (thirds, leading lines and all that) but are often less sure how to play with or against them in the field. When the lochans are under ice, there’s more opportunities to work with curves, but even so, the pictures don’t take themselves. We have to move ourselves and the camera.  Teaching is about helping others to articulate what they ‘see’ and then make it happen on the ground.

This photo and the one below were taken to facilitate a discussion on composition. Students will often be familiar with ‘the rules’ (thirds, leading lines and all that) but are often less sure how to play with or against them in the field. When the lochans are under ice, there’s more opportunities to work with curves, but even so, the pictures don’t take themselves. We have to move ourselves and the camera.

Teaching is about helping others to articulate what they ‘see’ and then make it happen on the ground.

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This Photo and the one below are both local to me and taken in autumn, but in different places. More  Silver Darlings  to finish seems appropriate. This scene is a wood local to Grantown, the other is on the slopes of the Feshie Hills, which are regenerating as the deer numbers come under control. Photographing trees is an excercise in relationships and simplicity. Keeping complex things simple a life skill worth practicing as much as I possibly can!

This Photo and the one below are both local to me and taken in autumn, but in different places. More Silver Darlings to finish seems appropriate. This scene is a wood local to Grantown, the other is on the slopes of the Feshie Hills, which are regenerating as the deer numbers come under control. Photographing trees is an excercise in relationships and simplicity. Keeping complex things simple a life skill worth practicing as much as I possibly can!

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